I write to oppose RSPs proposed DCO of Manston Airport Land
After deceiving myself, residents and yourself, for many months, and at previous unsatisfactory "consultations", RSP Have now come clean and have included in their Environmental Impact Statement a proposal for 4000 Q4 aircraft movements during the night time period, together with a further 2000 Q4 movements during a shoulder period defined as between 6:00 and 7:00 am.
That they wait until now, one week before what they hope will be a final acceptable consultation, to admit the necessity of extensive night flights to their plans, makes one question either their honesty or their understanding of what a nationally significant freight hub entails.
The residents of Ramsgate in particular, living between 200 yards and 2 miles of the end of the runway and directly on the most frequently used (70%) flight path, have been here before. Previous owners of the airport, that has now been closed for 3 years, have proposed night flights as a possible mitigation for the airport's repeated economic failure. Those proposals, similar to the current proposal, were met with a huge protest from Ramsgate residents, business owners, educationists etc. This was despite the offer then being passenger flights and state of the art aircraft rather than what is on offer now, which would have little direct benefit to residents. Residents were quite aware that the noise, sleep disturbance and environmental pollution would severely impact on their health and quality of life. The many tourist related businesses also saw a polluting airport as serious impediment to their viability, with predictable detrimental effects on employment.
In considering whether to support the application, I assume that it is necessary to consider the alternative proposal by the legitimate owners. I understand they have submitted a master plan that includes a heritage aviation facility that would honour the local history and enhance the visitor offer; an extensive business park building upon the owners extensive track record, and housing estate promising to be large enough to be sustainable, and avoiding the need to use green field land to meet the councils housing targets.
Taking land off of legitimate owners should not be done lightly. I see nothing in the Government's aviation plans that would justify doing this in this case.
Please refer to our FAQ for information and advice about how to engage with the process at the Pre-application stage: attachment 1
Our Advice Note 8 series explains how and when to register as an Interested Party and make representations about a proposed development if an application is submitted to the Planning Inspectorate and subsequently found to be of a satisfactory standard to be examined: attachment 2